Hey, I know a lot of you have been coming here from my process tutorial and my hands tutorial.
I haven’t been drawing that much lately, so I finally uploaded all the video tutorials I made with my buddy Evan (who runs an awesome Japan tour company which I’ll be going on!). Enjoy!
You can also see my fugly face, ahaha…. back when my hair was still a normal color.
hi! long time fan here - i was hoping to gain some advice. i recently left an undergrad in engineering to go into design (specifically industrial or crafts and i'm looking into visual arts as well) and was wondering for any tips on developing my portfolio + things to do and avoid + perhaps if you're willing to share what your portfolio contained. thanks for your help!!
I think, because you’re just entering the visual field, you should try a lot of aspects. Especially in school, there’s plenty of time to experiment. Cover the basics (perspective, anatomy, color, composition, etc), but find some part you’re really passionate about (character design, prop design, storyboarding, etc).
In the end, your portfolio should showcase your specialty and give a clear idea of what you want to do. Try for an 80%/20% split.
If you’re curious, here is my web portfolio and my print portfolio. The print one is more targeted, so I show that off first and people go to the website to see more.
Hi, I was just wondering whether you had a schedule of conventions you will be attending this spring I looked but couldn't find one.
Ah, since I’m working again, it won’t be many. The only ones on the slate are Kawaiikon (Honolulu, HI) and Anime Expo (Los Angeles, CA).
There are three I’ll attempt to get into: Fanime (San Jose, CA), Otakon (Baltimore, MD), and NDK (Denver, CO).
We're you at Otakon this past summer? Because I bought that katniss print (the one where her dress is on fire) there & I was wondering if it was actually you?
:) Yes, I was. I always sell my prints in-person, and I was at Otakon last year sharing a table with teaat2am. I love Otakon. I’ll try to go again this year.
I believe it was you who owned this. What is that thing you wear on your hand and wrist to support your wrist and also not smudge your artwork? I'm in need of one
Yes, I wear a brace when drawing to prevent RSI. Different people like different styles, but since mine’s preventative, I use this minimal one. There are more on the company website, though.
I got it at a local drugstore. At least in the United States, this brand is widely available over the counter, but I’m sure there are many options in most pharmacies.
Hi, I think your blog is so rad! I know you've mentioned that companies don't really care what school you go to so much as what your portfolio is like, but I was wondering how often you see graduates from the Art Institute in the animation industry. (Particularly, I'm looking at the Art Institute of Seattle, if that helps.)
I don’t know anyone from AI Seattle, but I’ve met successful folks from other AIs (Orange County, Santa Monica, Denver, Dallas). I bet there are Seattle folks that I just haven’t met.
However, the individuals I know tend to have mixed feelings about their education: all of them studied heavily outside of what their classes required, and many dropped the AI program without finishing. Again, it’s not the school - it’s the student: portfolio and work ethic aren’t necessarily tied to an institution.
Can i ask why you use w2, w4, w6, w8 for the copic markers? Do you think w1, w3,w5, w7 are ok too?
You can use any set of markers you want. I stick to warms because they look nice on the warm paper. You could use C. T. N for different looks. The ones you’ve listed are perfectly fine. It’s just the result will be lighter.
I see you travel a lot, and I wanna ask if it's business-wise, or for your enjoyment? (I know that you have to travel for cons.) Just curious I guess. Also, is there a place that you always wanted to visit, but haven't yet?
It depends. I live in the US and only sell at US cons. When I travel domestically, it’s about half for business and half for friends/family, and I try to combine trips to save money. I’m lucky - I know amazing people who’ve put me up in each location (thanks, college!).
My favorite/frequent US haunts include: Philadelphia, New York, Seattle, San Francisco, Denver, New Orleans, Chicago, Boston. There isn’t much on my US To-Do List anymore other than: The Grand Canyon, Alaska, Portland, Yosemite, and Vermont/Maine.
Outside the US, it’s for fun. I put aside money from each paycheck just for travel. The world is amazing - I’ve met a lot of international folks online that make me want to travel even more. I want to do a “30-by-30,” so I made a list earlier this year:
PLACES I’VE BEEN TO:
- United States (Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago, New Orleans, Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, DC, San Antonio, Boulder, Atlanta, Denver, Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, Orlando, Hawaii)
- United Kingdom (Glasgow, Edinburgh, London)
- France (Paris, Lyon)
- Canada (Toronto)
- Norway (Oslo, Bergen), Sweden (Stockholm), Denmark (Copenhagen)
- Finland (Helsinki, Rovaniemi), Iceland (Reykjavik)
- South Korea (Seoul), Singapore, Hong Kong
- Taiwan (Taipei), Japan (Kyoto, Osaka, Tokyo)
PLACES I’D LOVE TO VISIT:
- Australia (Sydney), New Zealand (Wellington)
- Thailand (Bangkok, Phuket), Malaysai (Kuala Lumpur), Phillippines, Cambodia (Angkor Wat)
- India (Delhi, Mumbai)
- Israel (Jerusalem), Egypt (Cairo), South Africa (Johannesburg)
- Spain (Barcelona, Madrid, Seville), Italy (Florence, Venice, Rome), Greece (Athens, Mikanos), Turkey (Istanbul)
- Germany (Berlin), Czech Republic (Prague), Hungary (Budapest), Russia (Moscow, St. Petersburg)
- Galapagos Islands, Peru (Incan Ruins), Argentina (Buenos Aires), Antartica, Brazil (Rio de Janeiro)
- China (Beijing, Shanghai)
I think traveling is a great way to become independent, learn about other cultures, and acquire huge artistic inspiration - much more effective than surfing the web or sitting in a classroom… I’ve also learned incredible patience because everything logistic that can go wrong totally will. :|
((I was caught once in the Boulder flood and once in London when they foiled a terrorist plot. Missing a flight isn’t so bad after you’ve gone through that.))
can you please tell me the story of your OCs? i have little tidbits from tags but i'm a little confused and i really want to understand because THEY'RE ALL SO BEAUTIFUL AND I WANT TO GET TO KNOW THEM (i checked the faq but couldn't find anythingD:)
All my OC stuff can be found in the Original tag. It’s not super coherent, but basically, I have four projects going:
- Genomancer - a fantasy epic that mixes magic with bioengineering. Has changed names from Mondigan and Wrath and Pardon (so you can search those tags, too). (indefinite progress)
- Prince - a series of gender-bent fairy tales. (in progress)
- Bonewalkers - a story about minor death gods in America, formerly an RP mixed with an AU from Genomancer. (brainstorming)
- The Indigo Thief - a short comic fairy tale AU featuring my Genomancer OCs. (indefinite hiatus)
- The Bow and the Rose - an undetermined steampunk AU featuring my Genomancer OCs. (indefinite hiatus)
To be honest, I’m not that creative, I put a lot of time into one universe and spin the character archetypes to a new world.
That said, I treat November/NaNoWriMo as my personal ‘Genomancer Month’ (no commissions or fanart!), so I’m going to try to post profiles about each of the characters so you can actually learn about more than what they look like. :D
I'm trying to collect the main things I should do to do well as an artist! So I just had a quick question---what are the five main things you would recommend for me to do as an artist just starting out? (I'm asking a bunch of artists, so if you see this similar question somewhere, it's not spam. I'm just trying to collect the average.) Thank you!
Haha, I saw this on someone else’s blog. I’m not sure if you mean a professional/career artist or just a general hobbyist. Either way, I hope this helps!
- Attitude is everything. Technical skill will come with adopting the right attitude. Let me elaborate.
- Learn everywhere from everything. Art is more than moving a brush on canvas. The more you explore the world, larger your visual library gets and the more you can add meaning to your work.
- Nothing will be perfect. No one makes perfect art, so you might as well just enjoy the journey. Unlike what society tells us, mistakes aren’t bad - they’re learning experiences.
- Check your ego. Whether it’s big or small, you’ll drive yourself in emotional circles (and probably drive other people nuts) if you tie your self-esteem to your work.
- Don’t give up. No one is good right away, and it doesn’t matter whether you are. Do it for yourself because it’s fun.
Sorry to wax philosophical, but I hope that’s enough insight for you! *o*
A lot of people think I use watercolor, but I’m way too lazy for that. So, I just made a straight-up full blown tutorial for this Ask because it’s so complicated. Here are links to purchasing materials:
Method is based off Peter Han’s CGMW/CDA/ACCD course, Visual Communication.
Other Tutorials: http://www.fictograph.com/tagged/tutorial
Hope this helps! I’m not really good at drawing hands (especially on pure digital media), but I thought you might get some use from my system. Treat it as a baseline breakdown, steps to use as you draw from reference.
Other Tutorials: http://www.fictograph.com/tagged/tutorial
Beautiful scenery =) May I ask, what in particular has helped you improve your environments from your travels? Is it just having exposure to different places, or more practice with perspective based from seeing it in architecture in person, maybe even just adding bolder lines in certain areas etc? I've been loving the last couple of line and marker pieces especially!
When you go somewhere, you get a better sense of how it “feels.” When I travel, I am adding to a visual and emotional reference library. The more little details and big structures I see, the more I learn about customs, designs, etc. These are the kind of things that you can use when world-building. And I think it’s better than just looking it up on the Internet because it’s so much more tangible.
The other stuff: perspective, line weight, is all just practice. I learned those things from the Internet. Hahah.
I was sort of conflicted about writing this to you, but I figured what the hell. I completely agree. The double standard is awful and unfair and it really shows how insecure some people are. This is coming from a guy (not a gay one) who draws sexy men because they're easier than girls. All those curves are intimidating... Also, I love "that thing you do", I think you're awesome :)
:) I’m glad you agree! Thanks for taking the time to message me. It’s comforting to know there are men who recognize the issue, too.
My roommate theorized it’s patriarchal ignorance. Obviously, both men and women draw what they like, but when a woman’s artistic preference lies outside the male’s idealized male, it creates dissonance - which is met with confusion … and in my experience, ridicule.
Personally, I’m a big fan of angular faces and long limbs, male and female! But there are 7 billion people who aren’t me: people who like small breasts, people who like large stomachs, people who like curly hair, people who like their own gender, and more. I think the media needs more diverse representations, so people can have a wide variety of things to learn to like! I encourage self-awareness of your own preferences, so you can better understand that everyone else has theirs, too.
(( It extends to relationships, too: there are people I’m attracted to and people who are attracted to me. Sometimes I’m lucky enough, and those things coincide - and maybe we’ll start a romantic relationship. Otherwise, we can still be friends! I think there’s a tendency for people to place too much emphasis on physical attractiveness being the defining aspect of how we interact with the gender(s) we’re attracted to. My ideal partner would act as my best friend, with a bonus of physical intimacy.))
So go on with your bad self, and draw all the sexy men and curvy ladies you want! It may take a lot of practice (I was really awful at drawing short hair for ages!), but it’ll be worth it to draw something you enjoy. Preference shows in style, and style is what makes a notable illustrator.
Hello! I'm actually about to graduate with an MFA in Computer Animation & VFX and am starting to put together my reel to send out to companies as an application. Knowing you've worked for Dreamworks and such, do you have any advice on maybe what the industry is really looking for right now from Animators or VFX artists?
First of all, congrats on graduating! :D
Unfortunately, it really depends on the studio. Since different studios release projects on different times, they are all on unique schedules. For example, Disney staffed up for Frozen about three months ago, meaning they hired tons of folks across the board. But now, they’ve filled up and there aren’t many positions for anyone. So, I’d recommend checking out the individual career pages of studios you’d like to work at. The only thing I know of off the top of my head is Nickelodeon has been looking for character and set designers for TMNT and Dora.
However, generally, the3D animation industry can always use more technical people. Programming is a valuable skill around here, especially in rigging and simulation departments like effects and cloth.